TO LIVESTREAM BOB'S SERVICE CLICK HERE
Bob Hastings went home to be with his Lord and Savior, passing away with family by his side, on Sunday, November 7, 2021.
A tinkerer from birth, Bob was fond of all things mechanical. He took his first foray into studying mechanics by disassembling the prized family radio at about four years old. Although Bob was as determined and focused as a four-year-old could be, the radio met its end that day. Upon owning his first car at 13, his future was set, based on a love of cars and making them look pretty and go fast.
With his dad Edward Hastings and mom Minnie (Kiel) Hastings operating a service station and auto mechanic shop, his passion for cars was hardly a surprise.
He was born on Grandpa and Grandma Kiel’s farm on October 23, 1937, a country mile east of Pease, MN. Bob was brought home to the house behind the filling station, sitting smack dab on the west side of US Highway 169 on the outskirts of the metropolis of Pease. As the first of five kids, Bob took on the mantle of oldest child with pride, leading Beverly, Butch, Carol and Kay on many adventures and childhood hi-jinks throughout Pease.
Bob attended Pease Christian school from 1st to 8th grade and attended church throughout his life as a member of Pease Christian Reformed Church. Bob was a faithful follower of God, and his love of Jesus Christ was founded at a young age, something he held dearly for the rest of his life. By living in or near Pease his entire life and fulfilling the critical requirements of attending both Pease school and church, he fully met the conditions to join the secret society of true Peasites.
In the fall of 1951, Bob moved on from all things Pease, going on to high school in the big town four miles to the north, and graduated from Milaca High School in 1955. After the summer of his graduation, Bob and two of his Pease grade school buddies loaded up a 1951 Ford convertible and headed south, taking in the sights of New Mexico, Texas, Florida, and many of the surrounding states. A seed of interest in traveling was planted, and Bob made many trips around the globe in the years that followed. On this fabled first trip, the three amigos spent over a month away, but the lure of Pease was just too strong.
Upon returning to Pease, he took his first “real” job in a welding shop in Princeton, MN. Not to be tied to the ball and chain of punching a clock, Bob lasted a whopping two days before putting in his notice. From that day on, Bob was self-employed in all things related to cars.
In 1956, Bob had his first date with Donna (Kooiman) Hastings at the Princeton Skating Rink. In Bob’s account of the story, Donna asked him out. Donna’s version is a little different. The truth is still a mystery. Bob and Donna were married on August 1, 1958. It’s not too difficult to guess where- in Pease, Minnesota, at the Pease Christian Reformed Church. If you are sensing a theme, you are probably right. Pease was woven into many parts of Bob’s life.
After a honeymoon to Northern Minnesota and Canada, Bob and Donna settled into their first home, directly in the heart of town, across the street from the creamery. Like the town, the house was really tiny-so much so that only newlyweds could see the true charm. Their home together boasted one bedroom and one outhouse, and when friends would visit, everyone had to sit on the bed to watch the TV. Bob and Donna were married for over 63 years. Their family began with the birth of Twila in 1960, with Russell following in 1964, and Randy in 1970.
Bob’s first venture as a self-employed entrepreneur was opening an auto body shop, which grew into an auto sales operation on the west side of Pease. The business grew so large that in 1971 Bob moved it – the great expanse of one whole mile north of town. His auto business was a source of pride for Bob, and he absolutely loved to see a customer, now a friend, drive off the lot in a car so nice they were sure to tell their friends all about it.. The business continued to grow and expand until his retirement in 1998. Well, it was meant to be his retirement– he continued buying, selling and fixing cars on a much smaller scale until a few years before his passing.
He truly enjoyed his work and had a great passion for it, working six days a week with many of those days being from early in the morning until late at night. No one is sure how he fit it all in, but Bob was active and found time to spend with his family and friends in all kinds of activities. Bob loved roller skating to music (the Pease version of dancing – oh no!), snow skiing, go karting, snowmobiling, motorcycling, water skiing, boating, and fishing. He took his love of motorized toys and outdoor activities and shared it with his kids, grandkids, relatives, and friends. His love of all these things culminated in buying a family cottage at Hazelglade Resort on Mille Lacs Lake in 1992, where he enjoyed sharing the space with anyone who wanted a day at the lake. Whether at home or at the cabin, he loved spending time playing card games, dice games, marbles, checkers or chess. Bob was competitive, but never a sore loser. At the same time, he never let his kids, grandkids or great-grandkids win without earning the victory.
The consummate supporter of his kids and grandkids, Bob spent more than likely Guinness World Record time at the kids athletic events, piano recitals, Christmas programs, choir concerts, and any other event involving a kid or grand kid. Every kid knew Bob would be there to cheer them on. Work and fun were important, but Bob’s commitment to walking with the Lord was most important. He spent time throughout his life contributing to both his church and his community. He shared his time as a volunteer and school board member for Pease Christian School during the years his kids attended, and a number of years after. Also serving on the Pease Christian Reformed church consistory, he spent terms as both a deacon and elder. He truly enjoyed the building projects and opportunities to see both the school and church change and grow through what God provided. Bob’s love for Pease prevailed to the very end, meeting with local school and church friends almost every Friday at the Pease Café throughout the last months of his life.
God blessed Bob and Donna with over 23 years together in retirement. After Bob’s retirement, the two moved to their retirement home south of Bock, MN. This was the trickiest move yet, pushing Bob out of the “all things that orbit around the Pease” realm. It nearly cost Bob and Donna their Peasite status! In actuality, it was a great home for them, with the most important extra feature- a shed big enough to store the boat, classic cars, the fifth wheel, and all the other toys.
When not at their Bock home, time was spent at the Hazelglade cottage in the summer, and winters in Wellton, AZ. Wellton was a place to gather with many friends of old, and many new friends to boot.
In 2017, Bob and Donna finally grew tired of mowing five acres of grass around the Bock homestead and made one more move to Rum River Country Estates. Located on the Rum River on the northwest side of Milaca, Bob was surrounded by dear old friends and family alike. It truly was a wonderful place to spend his final years, and gave Bob great comfort, considering some of the neighboring residents like to view this little enclave “Pease North”.
In 2019, Bob was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He spent his last 30 months being the Ultimate Warrior, fighting cancer with everything he had. Bob and family give God all the credit for this time, where God graciously gave Bob two and a half years to spend time with family and friends, visiting, reminiscing, and reflecting on all the special times God blessed him with.
Bob will be remembered and loved by his wife of 63 years Donna, daughter Twila Hastings of Milaca, son Russell & Jaemie Hastings of Shakopee, son Randy & Lynn Hastings of Sioux Falls, SD; Eight wonderful grandchildren: Melissa & Tim Wilmes, Michelle & Owen Schluender, Rob & Ali Droogsma, Rebecca, Alex, Julia, Isy & Will Hastings in addition to eight amazing great-grandchildren: Ava, Olivia, Emma, & Marlowe Wilmes, Amelia & Kaden Schluender, Lauryn & Tate Droogsma, brother Butch & Eileen Hastings of Stony Hill, sister Carol Berg of Milaca, and sister-in-law Beverly Clesi of Surprise, AZ, in addition to three delightful neighbor kids Hayden, Harper & Harrison Hultman.
Welcoming Bob to his place in heaven are his parents Ed and Minnie, sister Kay and sister Bev.
A Visitation where all are welcome will take place at Pease Christian Reformed Church, Pease, MN on Friday, November 12th from 5-7 p.m.
The following day, a Celebration of Bob’s life will take place at Pease Christian Reformed Church, Pease, MN on Saturday, November 13, at 11 a.m. Memorials may be sent in memory of Bob to Community (Pease) Christian School or Pease Christian Reformed Church.